Akkad, Tyber, Teralil, Yeng and Vorr:
The Breaching Auger
is a monstrous thing, a device designed to shear through rockcrete and breach fortifications with ease. That some within the Deathwatch turn such devices into weapons to be used against the foes of the Emperor is merely a testament to the ingenuity and murderous intent of the Astartes. As Brother Teralil raises the drill, the lenses of his layered helm gleam with what might be considered joy.
A moment is all it takes for the auger to shred the locking mechanism of the firebase, the doors grinding open a moment later as Akkad and Yeng force them apart. The firebase itself is dark, lights flickering sporadically. Perhaps more importantly, it is silent. But the Space Marines of the Deathwatch have little to fear from spectres and ghosts - they move with a synchronised precision that belies their different origins or their lack of familiarity with one another.
It takes only seconds for the first body to be found.
The Guardsman's eyes are open wide, his mouth gaping, his face frozen in disbelief and terror. His uniform is dark with blood - as is the lower half of his body, half-way down a corridor. Arcing sprays of arterial blood dominate the walls and ceiling. As you move through the outpost you find all of its inhabitants torn to pieces. You see the scorches of las-fire throughout, evidence of desperate last stands and hold-fasts, but not a single sign of what they were fighting. No blood, no body parts. Nothing but murder.
As Yeng inspects the wounds, it is clear that they were inflicted with razor-sharp talons, consistent with the bladed limbs of the Tyranid. But the Firebase itself is secure - there is no sign of any breach to the walls other than that inflicted by the Obsidian Glaive Techmarine.
* * *Montesa... (...and Greysight)
As you leave your meditation chamber aboard the Xenocide
, still mulling over the import and significance of the strange tome found by Tyber, it does not escape your heightened senses that you are being followed. The Storm Son. You know that the descendants of Jaghatai Khan have a strange and innate - spiritual, even - connection with the warp, and a veneration of their storm-watching Librarian cadres. You know that the strange clump of hair bound in bronze upon his armour resonates with an unusual psychic force. This Marine - Greysight
, you remind yourself - has been stoic and silent in the combined squad briefings, standing sentinel and speaking only rarely.
That you can
detect the Storm Son's pursuit, you reflect, suggests that he wants
you to be able to do so. Solastion (and Sabaan and Varvost):
If you are frustrated by your inaction, then the Eradicator is even more so. He stalks back and forth like a caged Felid, waiting to strike. Varvost is, above all things, a weapon forged in the service of the Emperor, and weapons rust when left unused. You reflect that you could have dispatched him with Tyber and Akkad's force, but that three days together in the back of a Chimera may not be ideal for any of them.
Regardless, you turn back to the holo-displays of Beregar and the surrounding environs. The work to secure the city for a siege is nearing completion; the work to enact Greysight's thermobaric shield is less so. You have had many opportunities to talk with the Mechanicus of the Metallican District. This is a far cry from the normal work of tending to an agri-world, overseeing the planting and harvesting of crop varieties, adjusting fertiliser distribution to ensure yield production, tending to the repairs of macro-harvesters and the like. In the smallest sense, you wonder if this is what Sanguinius faced, aiding in the defense of Terra knowing that the oncoming storm of Horusian tratiors would soon break upon the shore. Even as your mind wonders across the name of the arch-traitor you feel your blood start to swell.
You see the blinking icon indicating Outpost 43. Surely Akkad's squad must have found something by now.